Quick Facts on Precious
- English, Latin
- Number of syllables:
- Ranking popularity:
Characteristics of Precious
Etymology & Historical Origin - Precious
Precious is an English vocabulary word, an adjective that means “valuable”. The word became part of the English language in the late 13th century, borrowed from the Old French “precios” (précieux) which originated from the Latin “pretiosus” meaning “costly, dear, valuable” from “pretium” meaning “price, worth”. In the late Middle Ages the English used the term “Precieuse” to describe a woman who put on affectations of refined taste, witty usage of language and engagement in lively conversation. French playwright Molière used the word in his 1659 comedy “Les Précieuses ridicules” (The Affected Ladies) about two young provincial French women who spurn the advances of two “unrefined” suitors only to be duped into falling in love with the men’s valets (servants) later in the play. As a result, the word “precious” is often used with emphasis to express contempt or bemusement for something that is “overly valued”. In its purest sense, however, “Precious” is a word that denotes something rare and valuable, something not to be wasted and something to be treated with care. As a female given name, Precious is “precious and rare” to the United States.
Popularity of the Name Precious
Precious first appeared on the American female naming charts in 1978. Initially popularized within the African-American community, this vocabulary word name was bestowed in celebration of love for baby daughters. The name did immediately well on the charts, ascending almost 600 positions in ten short years, and was most commonly used in the state of Mississippi. Precious’s peak popularity occurred in 1996 at position #377 nationwide and at spot #89 in The Magnolia State (Mississippi) in 1992. Precious has experienced mainly downward momentum on the charts since the turn of the 21st century and the award-winning film “Precious” (2009) did little to jump-start the name’s usage. Precious is a name akin to Cherish, Jewel and Princess. It loudly exclaims a parent’s love for their child. Recently (in 2011), Precious fell off the female Top 1000 list of names which means this “precious” little sweetheart is no longer in vogue.
Popularity of the Girl Name Precious
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Cultural References to the Baby Name - Precious
Literary Characters of the Baby Name Precious
Precious (Push) Claireece “Precious” Jones is the lead character in author Sapphire’s first novel, Push, published in 1996 and made into an award winning movie called Precious in 2009. Precious’ story is a harrowing one: she is a functionally illiterate African-American teenager who has been sexually and physically abused by her parents, essentially abandoned by the educational system, and is the unwed mother of two children, while still a child herself. But Precious has within her the seeds of survival and triumph, and with the help of a beloved teacher, she slowly wends her way out of the tyrannical circumstances of her background. The more she learns, reads and observes, the wider her horizons become, and the higher her hopes. In essence, Precious lives up to her name – she learns to treat herself as the precious person she is, and to pass along that knowledge to her own precious children. She is ultimately the epitome of the irrepressible nature of the human spirit.
Popular Songs on Precious
Precious - a song by Depeche Mode
Precious - a song by the Pretenders
Precious - a song by Annie Lennox song
Precious - a song by The Jam
Precious - a song by Vivid
Precious - a song by Yuna Ito
Children's Books on the Baby Name Precious
Precious and the Boo Hag (Patricia C. McKissack & Onawumi Jean Moss) - When Precious is left home alone with a stomachache, she's got nothing but a warning from Mama -- "Don't let nothing or nobody into this house" -- to keep her company. You see, "nothing or nobody" could turn out to be something awful: the Boo Hag! The Boo Hag's got a voice that rumbles like thunder and hair that shoots out like lightning. And she can disguise herself to look like anything. So when the Boo Hag comes calling, will Precious be clever enough to outwit even the trickiest trickster? Here's an oh-so-funny -- and not-too-scary -- story from Newbery Honor-winning author Patricia C. McKissack and Onawumi Jean Moss that's paired with spirited, folksy illustrations by Kyrsten Brooker. Recommended for ages 4-8.
Precious and the Puggies: Precious Ramotswe's Very First Case (Alexander McCall Smith) - 'World First' a brand new story from Alexander McCall Smith that is now available in paperback! A world first from Itchy Coo, this is a brand new book for younger readers, telling the story of the girlhood adventures of Precious Ramotswe, founder of the No. 1 Ladies' Detective Agency. Written by one of the world's favourite authors, Alexander McCall Smith, and translated into Scots by award winning author, James Robertson, this story will not be available in any other language until 2011. The Scots is simple and accessible, and a glossary will be provided for those not familiar with Scots words. Recommended for ages uncertain.
Push: A Novel (Sapphire) - Relentless, remorseless, and inspirational, this "horrific, hope-filled story" (Newsday) is certain to haunt a generation of readers. Precious Jones, 16 years old and pregnant by her father with her second child, meets a determined and highly radical teacher who takes her on a journey of transformation and redemption. Recommended for ages young adult.
Famous People Named Precious
Famous People Named Precious - We cannot find any celebrities or significantly famous people with the first name Precious.
Children of Famous People Named Precious
Famous People Who Named Their Daughter Precious - Tommy Chong (comedian/actor)
Precious - Girl Baby Name - Historic Figures
Precious - We cannot find any historically significant people with the first name Precious.
Personality of the Girl Name Precious
The number Seven personality is deeply mystical and highly in tune with their spirituality. They operate on a different wavelength than the average joe. Spending time alone comes easily to Sevens, as it gives them time to contemplate philosophical, religious and spiritual ideas in an effort to find "real truth". Sevens are wise, but often exude mystery as if they are tapped into something the rest of us don't understand. They love the outdoors and are fed by nature. Sevens are constantly seeking to understand human nature, our place in the universe, and the mystery of life in general. This makes them quite artistic and poetic, but they are also keen observers with high intellect - so they are equally scientific-minded. Sevens are charitable and care deeply about the human condition.
Variations of the Baby Name - Precious